Withnell choir on song for Preston lights switch-on

CHEERS: Puplis from Withnell Fold Primary School choir celebrate after they were chosen to sing at the switch-on of Preston’s Christmas Lights

CHEERS: Puplis from Withnell Fold Primary School choir celebrate after they were chosen to sing at the switch-on of Preston’s Christmas Lights

First published in News Chorley Citizen: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A school choir has sung its way to success after winning a top spot at Preston’s Christmas lights switch-on.

The Withnell Fold Primary School choir has been selected to sing at the festive occasion after winning the Choir for Christmas competition organised by Preston-based radio station, Rock FM.

Staff at the school sent a CD of the choir singing their version of Christmas classics to the station, with the top three schools being invited to the grand final at the Preston Minster.

The children from the school in Withnell Fold secured the first prize after singing Rockin’ around the Shop and Away in the Manger, beating off competition from Brindle St Joseph’s Primary, in Hoghton and Pool House Community Primary School, in Ingol.

The 21-strong choir will now go on to perform at the Preston Christmas lights switch-on, on Wednesday, November 19, joining Atomic Kitten’s Natasha Hamilton, and the cast of this year's pantomime, including ex-Blue Peter presenter Tim Vincent, plus Big Brother Nine star Stephanie McMichael and Rock FM's breakfast show team.

Teacher Sue Teale said: “We started off thinking it’s great just taking part but when we won, it was very moving and everyone was ecstatic.”

The judging panel included Rock FM breakfast presenter, Ross Beresford; assistant director of leisure and community at Preston City Council, Phil Walsh; and Babs Murphy, chief executive of the North and Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce for Business.

Zoe Mather, 10, said: “When I found out I just started giving everyone high fives. I really like being in the choir because it means we get to go to lots of places and I’m excited about singing at the lights switch-on.”

Another treat in store for the pupils is a visit from last year’s X-Factor stars, Same Difference.

The singing siblings Sean and Sarah Smith will visit the school on Wednesday afternoon and will then accompany the choir to the lights switch-on in Preston at around 5pm.

The choir will also get the chance to record one of their songs at the Rock FM studio, in St Paul’s Square, Preston.

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